(Photo: Julie Artacho)
Ivanie Aubin-Malo is part of the 2018-19 cohort of the Ontario-Quebec project. Inspired by the success of Jouer dehors, this program, which aim is to develop dance production skills for artists who identify with Indigenous or racialized communities, is an initiative launched by the CanDance Presenting Network, La danse sur les routes du Québec and Ontario Presents.
“My name is Ivanie Aubin-Malo. I’m a Quebecer, Wolastoqey and a dancer.
Dance is as much a part of me as my origins. It is my internal and external connection with nature, and it has led me to the affirmation of my indigenous roots. It is through dance that I meet the world.
After meeting James Jones, a Powwow dancer who performed internationally with A Tribe Called Red, I followed his advice and went to Vancouver to learn the Fancy Shawl Powwow Dance. James’ friend Curtis Joe Miller called me when I arrived out West and offered to teach me. The next morning, Curtis and I were on the road together, headed to our first training session and I ended up following him for four months. I quickly understood the wealth that having a mentor can offer.
As a creator, I like to emphasize the importance of nature, of life force and the layers of ourselves that are sometimes invisible, but which come to the surface when we dance. The notion of caring for what surrounds me is important. It is the wellspring of my creativity. I want to share this love with my greater family and establish, or re-establish, open and trusting connections.
At the Powwow I was told that dancers materialize the beat of the drum and its vibrations through the air. For me, dance is a way of putting my vision into action, of engaging myself directionally and materially. My vision is the heartbeat that guides my life. If I did not try to embody it, I would lose my inspiration and my sense of growth.
When I introduce an idea or an element into my choreography, it is so that people can see it, question it and then think about it. I don’t claim know everything about the ideas that make up my choreographies. However, I can say that they are primordial, and I enjoy it when someone contributes a new research element or a new perspective that in turn, inspires me to learn more and to pursue my reflections.
The most memorable encounters of my life have been made through dance. My hope is that MULA will facilitate new encounters and that it will be a work that allows me to introduce myself to others. For me, the “end result” or “the show” is just the punctuation at the end of a long personal journey. I hope that this punctuation inspires others to take concrete actions and bring their own visions to life.”